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Tuesday, May 11, 2010
An early look at the Big Ten bowl picture

By ESPN.com staff
ESPN.com

The 2010-11 Big Ten bowl lineup is now set, with the Insight Bowl moving up in the pecking order and three new games -- Gator, Texas, Dallas Football Classic -- coming aboard. A ton of things can happen between now and Sept. 2, but there's no harm in taking a look at which teams likely will be packing their bags in late December or early January, and which teams will be staying home.

The Big Ten's first BCS entry will go to the Rose Bowl unless it qualifies for the national championship. Because of a new rule taking effect in 2010, if the Big Ten loses its champion to the national title game, it likely would lose a spot in the Rose Bowl to a non-BCS team if that team earns a BCS berth. If both the Big Ten and Pac-10 lose teams to the national title game, the Big Ten could still get a second squad to Pasadena.

Here's one last look at the Big Ten's bowl selection order:

Selection No. 1 (champion): Rose Bowl/BCS vs. Pac-10/BCS, Jan. 1, ESPN
Selection No. 2: Capital One Bowl vs. SEC, Jan. 1, ESPN
Selection No. 3: Outback Bowl vs. SEC, Jan. 1, ABC
Selection No. 4: Gator Bowl vs. SEC, Jan. 1, ESPN2
Selection No. 5: Insight Bowl vs. Big 12, Dec. 28, ESPN
Selection No. 6: Texas Bowl vs. Big 12, Dec. 29, ESPN
Selection No. 7: Dallas Football Classic vs. Conference USA or Big 12, Jan. 1, ESPNU
Selection No. 8: Little Caesars Pizza Bowl vs. MAC, Dec. 26, ESPN

With potentially nine postseason spots available, Big Ten teams that win at least six games are virtually assured of a bowl berth.

And here's how I see things shaking out ...

BOWL LOCKS
ON THE FENCE
BOWLING UPHILL